Final Study Guide Essay

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PLS 101 Exam 4 Study Guide Dr. Pybas
Exam time and date: 1:15-3:15, Tuesday, December 13
Chapters 10-14

Ch. 10 – Public Opinion

1. What is public opinion?
What the public thinks
2. What is a poll? What is random sampling and why is it important? What is sampling error?
Public opinion poll: nothing more than scientific efforts to measure public opinion.
Random Sampling: one doesn’t overrepresent any portion of the population and whose responses can therefore be safely generalized to the whole, if we don’t use random sampling it will not be an accurate depiction of public opinion
Sampling error: a number that indicate how reliable the poll is
3. Why should we be cautious in reading public opinion polls?
Public opinion is unstable/subject to change/not constant
Opinion polls are conducted randomly
People will answer the question whether or not they have thought about it
4. Explain what “political socialization” means and discuss the main agents of political socialization.
The process/means by which we acquire political knowledge Family, media, schools, churches, neighborhoods, workplaces
5. What is political ideology?
Opinion on how much government should be involved In the economy/
6. Know the difference between liberalism, conservatism, libertarianism, and populism.
Populism: advocates strong governmental intervention in economics and (prohibition

Ch. 11 – Parties & Interest Groups

7. Explain or define what a political party is and explain what its components are, i.e., party in the electorate (among voters), party as organization, and set of leaders. Political Party: voters identify with one or another party, organizations that have permanent set of leaders: get elected under party label
8. Who founded the first political parties, what were these parties called, and what policies did these parties support?
Alexander Hamilton and James Madison: the federalists:
Thomas Jefferson and James Madison: Democrat-REpublicans
9. Define realignment and dealignment and explain the reason for and consequence of split-ticket voting.
Party Realignment: one party wil dominate approximately 25-40 years
Party Dealignment: after 1968, realignment is no longer true, no party dominance after 1968, divided government
Split ticket voting: leads to divided government; suggest weaker party loyalty
10. Explain why the American party system has largely been a two-party system throughout the nation’s history.
Ballot restriction/ballot accesss you cannot declare yourself a candidate for congress, you have to have received 5% of the vote the previous election
You have to get majority; other countries if you get a percentage of the vote, you get representation
People accept it
11. What is the political consequence of a two-party system?
Moderation parties: candidates want to get as many votes as possible so they go closer to the middle on topics because you have to get majority vote
12. Describe the main types of third-parties, giving appropriate examples.
Single issue parties: Created over a single issue: nineteen-teens: prohibition party; right to life party
Ideological Parties Minor party with a well developed set of beliefs about government: green party; libertarian party: for minimal gov’t intervention in economy and other social issues
Factional parties One that splinters off from oe of the main parties
Fight w/in major parties and loser make new party Bull moose party
13. What is an interest group?
Organization of people sharing a common interst or goal that seeks to influence the making of public policy
Support candidates, but no one runs under the label of an interest group
14. What are the three different types of interest groups?
Economic groups Lobby for economic benefits like a tax break for their industry
Civil rights
Public rights
15. Explain the “free rider” problem and the ways in which interest groups seek to persuade individuals to join